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Former Tax Preparer Found Guilty In Tax Fraud Scheme

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A person uses a calculator as he fills out a pre-filled tax declaration for income tax. (Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images)

A person uses a calculator as he fills out a pre-filled tax declaration for income tax. (Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP/Getty Images)

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ATLANTA (AP) — The owner of a tax preparation business has pleaded guilty to using stolen identities to claim millions in fraudulent tax refunds.

U.S. Attorney’s spokesman Bob Page says 44-year-old Kevin Sonnier, of Ellenwood, worked with others to convince thousands of victims they could apply for stimulus payments from the federal government by giving him their names and social security numbers. Authorities say Sonnier also recruited runners who promoted the scheme by word of mouth and collected personal information for Sonnier to use.

Page says Sonnier operated a tax business from July 2010 to January 2013 and fraudulently claimed about $15 million in refunds.

Sonnier pleaded guilty to wire fraud, conspiracy and aggravated identity theft. His sentencing is scheduled for September 26.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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